We stood in an extra long line last night to see Tegan and Sara, and it was totally worth it. The twins, who hail from Calgary, have been making music for almost two decades and are just now working their way in to the mainstream music scene. Heartthrob, their seventh studio album, debuted at number three on the Billboard 200 chart, the band’s highest chart position to date. Heartthrob is a fast-paced, pop-infused album that will make you want to get up and dance. It brings to mind images of Cindy Lauper, slouch socks and disco balls; it’s a tight, 10-track offering that will leave you wanting more. I highly suggest that you take a moment and purchase it right now – it will be the best decision you make today.
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With 18 years of catalog to work from, it’s a wonder the show wasn’t 4 hours long. As it stood, the twins played for a solid hour and forty five. They played a mix of older hits (Walking With A Ghost, The Con, Where Does The Good Go, Alligator), the entirety of Heartthrob, a Prince cover (When You Were Mine), a medley of their very first songs (including my favourite, Monday Monday Monday) and ended with Body Work, the collaboration they did with the electronic musician and DJ Morgan Page.
The sound quality was perfect – the songs were clear and loud enough (but not too loud), and you could distinctly hear their voices and the lyrics. Often at bigger shows the music is done a disservice by the poor acoustics of a large venue or if the mixing isn’t done right. Not so for this show – they sounded incredible live.
I also appreciated that they sounded human. Sara messed up the lyrics at the beginning of one song, their voices were not always perfect and sometimes they had trouble hitting higher notes. This wasn’t something that bothered me, but rather something that endeared them to me. When the beginning of “How Come You Don’t Want Me” wasn’t up to her standards, Sara halted the song and asked to begin again saying, “We gotta get this right for our hometown crowd! If this was Edmonton we’d probably just push through; if this was Regina? Forget about it. But this is Calgary – we have to get it right!” You can just imagine the response that got.
Tegan and Sara have immense talent and they weren’t afraid of belting out a song with so much force that their voices cracked. They went for it full-tilt; they poured their hearts into each song and I love them more for it. They’re also hilarious and told silly stories between songs, bantering back and forth like only twin sisters who also work together and are with each other constantly can do.
When the opening notes to “Closer”, their current hit single, started to play I handed Theo my bag and joined in with the dancing crowd. It was so much fun. We left the show with aching feet, sore backs, pounding hearts and that euphoric feeling that comes after you know you’ve just been witness to something special. If Tegan and Sara are in your neck of the woods, I highly suggest you snag a ticket before they’re all gone. It’ll be worth it, I promise.
Krista Wiebe is a freelance editor and writer based in Calgary. Follow her on Twitter @KristaWiebe
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